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US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

SydShamino Re:More proof (661 comments)

There are strategies to cool the planet using atmospheric seeding. They are only political if you try to do them over territory of a given country. Do them over the open ocean, and it's (if anything) a military problem.

This assumes there's someone with enough money and power to fund and execute such a strategy by fiat, who isn't also part of a government.

5 days ago
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US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

SydShamino Re:More proof (661 comments)

Unless, of course, you're talking about a jury vote. That's the point of juries - to decide facts when they aren't otherwise apparent. Those facts better be limited to those relevant to the case, though, and are only limited in scope to the outcome of that case as it was presented to that jury.

5 days ago
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US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

SydShamino Re:More proof (661 comments)

That's a Last Week with John Oliver quote.

5 days ago
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Facebook Will Let You Flag Content As 'False'

SydShamino Re:Not "like Slashdot" (224 comments)

Giving up mods to reply...

When something has been previously moderated "+1 Informative" but it is factually incorrect, then the previous moderation was wrong and the post is overrated. "-1 Overrated" corrects for the previous moderation in this case. This represents by far most of my use of the moderation.

When something has been previously moderated "+1 Insightful" but it is trite or inaccurate, then the previous moderation was wrong and the post is overrated. "-1 Overrated" corrects for the previous moderation in this case. This is pretty rare as I try to read deep meaning into even the shortest of "Insightful" posts.

I never use "-1 Overrated" for something that was previously rated as "+1 Interesting", as interesting is completely subjective. Nor do I ever use "-1 Overrated" for something that was previously rated as "+1 Funny", though if it's racist or sexist then "-1 Flamebait" might apply.

I rarely if ever use "+1 Underrated" at all, and never use "-1 Overrated" on something that has not previously been moderated up incorrectly.

5 days ago
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Obama Proposes 30-Day Deadline For Disclosing Security Breaches

SydShamino Re:Not a bad idea... (125 comments)

No! Just no!

If you are a business in the business of making money, small or large, and you have taken my data for some business reason and are careless with it, you should be liable for whatever happens.

Isn't it amazing how businesses have managed to turn fraud - a crime perpetrated against them, for which they are responsible for preventing it, detecting it, and absorbing any losses because of it - into "identity theft", a crime for which the consequences are dumped onto a third party who has to prove his or her innocence?

I think the corporate model now is simultaneously both "we own customer data we collected" and "the customer is responsible for his or her own data", nonsensical doublespeak designed to let them do what they want with minimal consequences.

about two weeks ago
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AMD, Nvidia Reportedly Tripped Up On Process Shrinks

SydShamino Re:capitals ? (230 comments)

AP style is to only capitalize the first word and proper nouns

https://www.apstylebook.com/?d...

search for "News media" and read the questions that follow

about three weeks ago
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AMD, Nvidia Reportedly Tripped Up On Process Shrinks

SydShamino Re:bean counters ruin another company (230 comments)

If NVidia build a fab, it would be great for them if/when their fab had cutting-edge processes and NVidia chips were the most profitable thing to run. But... what happens when their fab is out of date? NVidia chip designers would likely be forced to design for the NVidia fab anyway, and their hardware would fall behind. Or... what happens when their fab is updated? If they are one of the few on a new process, assuming they aren't sued by Intel for patent violations, should the NVidia fab lose out on potential revenue by building NVidia chips instead of more profitable Apple or Samsung chips?

Basically, if you aren't big enough and so far ahead of everyone else to keep all your own equipment running (i.e. Intel), nor are you able to contract in work (i.e. TSMC, GlobalFoundries), you aren't going to be successful with your own fab any more. You're either holding back your design shop, or holding back your fab, and either way you're not making as much profit as your competitors, which means you can't invest as much into your design shop or your fab.

about three weeks ago
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AMD, Nvidia Reportedly Tripped Up On Process Shrinks

SydShamino Re:bean counters ruin another company (230 comments)

Also, exploiting cultural differences. You won't get many Americans willing to live and eat in a dorm attached to the manufacturing plant, 800 miles from family, so they really have no distractions but work. (And of course you mention regulation, but having those workers for 12 hour shifts, 6 days a week, for 50 weeks straight can't hurt the bottom line - just the workers.)

about three weeks ago
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Seismological Society of America Claims Fracking Reactivated Ohio Fault

SydShamino Re:But ... but ... gas is below 2 bucks man! (168 comments)

That won't work, because it's much easier to mothball existing equipment, then bring it back online, than it is to invent, design, and build that equipment in the first place. Saudi Arabia would have to hold the price low indefinitely (increasing supply to keep up with increasing demand) or the price would creep back up until fracking is profitable again. And the cost for fracking will go down when you can recommission old equipment instead of buying new. (I doubt you can buy used equipment today because every piece every made is either broken or working a field already.)

In order for that strategy to work, you have to flood the market before alternatives are invented and designed. That's what happened in the '80s. There was a lot of talk about automobile efficiency after the oil crunch of the 1970s. While progress was made, the '80s oil boom and increased production slowed down a lot of the invention process. With solar efficiency where it is already, with viable electric cars here and more the horizon, and with fracking technology a sunk cost, I think it's too late. (Maybe it will slow the mindset shift necessary for the adoption of safer nuclear?)

about three weeks ago
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Seismological Society of America Claims Fracking Reactivated Ohio Fault

SydShamino Re:what if (168 comments)

Use the bone analogy. A fractured bone is a fault. After it heals, if you leave it alone, do you ever worry that the pent-up pressure will fracture it again on its own? And yet, if someone drilled into your (healed) bone fracture and injected it with high-pressure water, might it fracture again and then start moving?

about three weeks ago
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Seismological Society of America Claims Fracking Reactivated Ohio Fault

SydShamino Re:Good luck with that. (168 comments)

They (the owners of the company, not the pseudo-person company itself) would happily agree to those terms, knowing that they are protected by investor and bankruptcy laws, and eventually their own deaths and inheritance laws. Those terms are thus meaningless. Long-term environmental protection must be done through preventative regulation, not through post-damage punishment, as the time scales ensure those responsible cannot be adequately punished.

I'm not making any claim as to whether fracking causes long-term environmental damage (though I'm happy it's not happening under my house), just pointing out that if it did, reactive punishment wouldn't stop it.

about three weeks ago
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Seismological Society of America Claims Fracking Reactivated Ohio Fault

SydShamino Re:Known costs vs. unknown costs (168 comments)

Physics is almost 14 billion years old, but parts of it are still unknown. Just because we've been doing something for 100 years doesn't mean we understand it completely.

about three weeks ago
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Netflix Begins Blocking Users Who Bypass Region Locks

SydShamino Re:Hello, Netflix! (121 comments)

Netflix doesn't have a choice here; they get most of their content from licensing deals and likely were pressured into this by those providers.

The best thing you could do is support netflix and watch their original programming, so they can make more and cut out the established Big Content providers. (Until Netflix becomes one and we move on to the next new thing.)

about three weeks ago
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Apple Faces Class Action Lawsuit For Shrinking Storage Space In iOS 8

SydShamino Re:MicroSD card? (325 comments)

If you did a full backup immediately before upgrading, I think you can restore that backup.

about three weeks ago
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2014: Hottest Year On Record

SydShamino Re:noooo (560 comments)

If it's still hot it's not waste, it's fuel. Reprocess that shit and use it again. Build all the nuclear plants on military bases (or give them military-style security) if the paranoid need to for security, but stop making reprocessing a taboo as it can greatly reduce the "spent" fuel problem.

about three weeks ago
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Designing the Best Board Game

SydShamino Re:What I like (155 comments)

Land dependency is Magic's number one flaw. It always has been. If there had been a rule like "You can play any card from your hand face down as a land that you can tap for one colorless mana" the game would be very different, but less flawed.

Mana screws, though, occur more on the game level than turn level. If you aren't in a game where you are screwed, your turns are based on strategy after randomness, i.e. draw a card then plan what you want to do based on the known board and hand state, with the pseudorandomness of your opponent's choices to keep play somewhat uncertain.

about a month ago
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Designing the Best Board Game

SydShamino Re:cooperative game (155 comments)

The issue is that the inexperienced players need to just do what the experienced ones tell them to, if the team wants to win. This leads to coops being dominated by the most vocal & experienced player. That player could just as easily play by himself, playing all the hands, as a solitary game.

That's why I don't care for most coops, at least.

about a month ago
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Designing the Best Board Game

SydShamino Re:Where the losers feel like they also won (155 comments)

The problem with cooperative games is that many of them devolve into the most dominant personality running the show, i.e. if we want to win, everyone has to do what the smartest person says they should. Games of this sort that allow recovery from the bad decisions of one team mate are often trivially easy if all the players are equals and execute flawlessly.

Party games, like Cards Against Humanity, or Telestrations (where we too don't keep score) are just for fun, but also don't remotely tickle the itch of someone looking for the intellectual challenge a strategic board game provides. Dixit perhaps gets closest for me, as I play into the strategy of predicting who might play what based on how well I know them.

about a month ago
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Designing the Best Board Game

SydShamino Re:Strategy over luck (155 comments)

Settlers is incredibly random, but also is affected greatly by the pseudorandomness of other player's actions. After initial town placement, before the first turn begins, some players can be at such a disadvantage as to be unlikely to win.

Ticket to Ride doesn't suffer from this problem, because competitive players know the routes, predict the paths of those in the lead, and block them.

I agree that some randomness is necessary to level the playing field, as otherwise you have a game like chess and it's boring if you aren't well matched to your opponent. As I posted elsewhere in the thread, games that feel fun are games of luck + strategy, where something random happens but then you can make the best of it through meaningful choices. Games of strategy + luck (i.e randomness after decisions, rather than before) can feel frustrating if the randomness undoes the planning. Luck + no meaningful decisions (monopoly, candy land) is just stupid if you are over 10.

about a month ago
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Designing the Best Board Game

SydShamino Re:The right amount of randomness (155 comments)

The difference also lies in how the randomness affects you. Games where you make choices, then a random event occurs (like a die roll) to resolve everything can feel frustrating. On the other hand, games where something random happens, then you make (meaningful) choices based on it, feel more empowering to the player.

Talisman - Random event (die roll) followed by sometimes-meaningful choice (which direction to walk) followed by random event (card draw)
Alien Frontiers - Random event (dice roll) followed by meaningful choices (how to manipulate and deploy the dice)
Monopoly - Random event (die roll) followed sometimes by obvious "choice" (whether to buy or not) or by no choice at all (pay rent)
Power Grid - Random event (power plant card draw) followed by meaningful choices (what to bid, where to build, what to power)

Any of these games can be fun to the right sort of people in the right mood, but games where meaningful choices aren't nullified by a die roll tend to attract more replayability from the adult board game crowd. I'm neglecting the pseudorandom effects of other players actions on your choices (such as a shortage of fuel in power grid, or someone else building where you wanted to) because understanding and predicting the strategies of your opponents is a learnable skill.

Games where nothing random ever occurs (i.e. chess) can garner high devotion, but to be enjoyable they also need to be complicated enough to require significant skill to master (i.e. tic-tac-toe has no randomness other than who goes first, but is not enjoyable once you are older than six). These games can also be frustrating if there is a skill gap between players.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Sony Demands Press Destroy Leaked Documents

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  about a month and a half ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "In an effort that may run afoul of the first amendment, Sony, through their lawyer David Boies (of SCO infamy), has sent a letter to major news organizations demanding that they refrain from downloading any leaked documents, and destroy those already possessed. Sony threatens legal action to news organizations that do not comply, saying that "Sony Pictures Entertainment will have no choice but to hold you responsible for any damage or loss arising from such use or dissemination by you.""
Link to Original Source
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Exploiting Cashier-as-a-Service Providers

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 3 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Researches at Indiana University and Microsoft found and exploited flaws in the communication between web stores and third-party cashiers (Amazon Payments, PayPal, Google Checkout) to order items for free, or at prices of their choice. "We believe that it is difficult to ensure the security of a CaaS-based checkout system in the presence of a malicious shopper" said the study co-author. The identified flaws have been reported and fixed, but they feel that more, similar flaws are likely given the complicated nature of many web-based transactions."
Link to Original Source
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New British Government Vows to Strengthen Liberty

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 4 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg of the new British coalition government has announced a litany of proposed reforms designed to strengthen individual liberty and privacy, on several topics often championed among Slashdot readers, including: elimination of unnecessary laws to stop making "criminals out of ordinary people", elimination of the national identity card program and new biometric passports, removal of restrictions on the right to peacefully protest, restrictions on schools taking fingerprints without permission, curtailing of anti-terrorism legislation that allowed for detention of subjects for extended periods without charge, replacement of the "first-past-the-post" election system with an instant-runoff system, new regulation of the use of surveillance cameras. "Britain must not be a country where our children grow up so used to their liberty being infringed that they expect it without question," Clegg said.

The Conservative Party of the governing coalition is said to be less receptive to these reforms; hopefully some of them can be enacted before the coalition fails."

Link to Original Source
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Blue M&Ms can lessen the damage from spinal in

SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 5 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center have found that the dye used in blue M&Ms and other foods can, when given to a patient shortly after a spinal injury, minimizing secondary damage caused by the body when it kills off nearby healthy cells. Given that 85% of spinal injury patients are currently untreated (and some doctors don't trust the treatment given to the other 15%), a relatively safe treatment like this could help preserve some function for thousands of patients. The best part? In lab rats the subjects given the treatment turn blue."
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SydShamino SydShamino writes  |  more than 7 years ago

SydShamino (547793) writes "CNN, the Associated Press and others are reporting that an independent audit of the FBI revealed "serious misuse" of power to acquire private information granted in the Patriot Act. FBI Director Robert Mueller has accepted responsibility for problems and says they are being corrected, but Congress has already called for hearings. There's no word yet on criminal charges against anyone in the FBI who might have broken the law."

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